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Dror Israel Movement - because only together we make a difference

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Dror Israel is an educational movement, social and cooperative that was established in 2006.The movement includes children and teens, youngsters and adults that come from over the country. Since its establishment the movement makes has various activities that are designed to promote equality, peace and the democracy among the people, and create an open dialogue that is based on respect, attentiveness and understanding all the parties that exist in the society.

Through its many and varied activities, raising awareness and the support it gives, the movement believes that it will be possible to create a better society that fights against the violence and racism.

 

Most of the movement members live in a new unique collaborative model- Urban Educators Kibbutz – it is about a renewal of Kibbutz idea, which played a key role in the establishing of the state of Israel, while modifying to the 21st century. Educators Kibbutzes work in autonomous small cells and the movement provides an additional safety net for the kibbutzes. The educators Kibbutzes are located within the cities and many members are engaged in educational activities at schools and the activities' scope reach hundreds of thousands of children and teens a year.

3 groups that operate for the peace, the equality and the democracy

During the 80's and 90's to the present the state of Israel has had accelerated privatization processes. This policy has led to the wide gaps in the Israeli society and even to poverty. Even the various factories in the labor movement have changed the faces and the people were afraid that there will be no place for the socialist Zionist idea in the Israeli society.

Out of these changes Dror Israel movement has grown: The members of the youth worker and learner movement that grew up and wanted to keep and educate and experience a cooperative way of life, established thousands of continued frames that will allow to thousands of young people and adults to renew the cooperative idea and set up dozens of unique educational frameworks.

Dror Israel on-line

Dror Israel movement is active on-line, making information and participation approachable. The movement keeps an open channel of communication via its Facebook page. The page keeps followers up to date about activates, workshops on writing and composing and more. Dror Israel also post photos, videos of varies events.

More information about Dror Israel can be found on kvutzot.net, kolzchut.org.il and calcalist.co.il.

Dror Israel works with over 200,000 young people from different backgrounds in order to increase tolerance, equality and democracy in Israeli society.

Nouveau kibbutz movement taking root

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September 10, 2015

jaffa, israel | Zohar Avigdori walked into a typically disheveled staff room of an atypical summer camp in Israel and sniffed appreciatively. “Always the smell of chocolate spread and sweat,” the 33-year-old remarked nostalgically. “Summer in the youth movement.”

Zohar Avigdori
Zohar Avigdori
Teenage counselors were busy getting ready for the 100 Arab and Jewish kids who would soon arrive for a four-day shared existence camp.

Its purpose: To engage children from the heavily segregated Jaffa area, south of Tel Aviv, in fun activities that would build friendships.

The camp is run by Dror Israel, a modern-day, idealistic kibbutz movement devoted to improving Israeli society through education. The program has some 1,200 staff members who live in 16 urban kibbutzes throughout Israel; at nearby facilities, they run schools, camps and other programs that engage Arabs, Jews, new immigrants, at-risk youth and others.

“They basically use Jewish education as a lever for societal change,” said Rabbi James Brandt, CEO of the Jewish Federation of the East Bay, which this year gave $65,000 to help fund a Dror Israel kibbutz — one located in Akko on Israel’s north coast.

“In a time in Israel when traditional kibbutzim are in such a sharp decline, they’ve developed a new model for the kibbutz where the product of the kibbutz is Jewish education and social change,” Brandt added. “The goal of the kibbutz is to improve Israeli society.”
Mural at a Dror Israel camp in Jaffa  photos/drew himmelstein
Mural at a Dror Israel camp in Jaffa photos/drew himmelstein

In addition to giving money to Dror Israel over the past four years, the East Bay federation has engaged in exchanges with the program — with East Bay community members visiting the kibbutz in Akko and Dror Israel members traveling to the East Bay.

“I find meaning in trying to build a better Israeli society,” said Jonathan Kershenbaum, 23, activity coordinator of the Dror Israel camp in Jaffa. “We believe the key to integration is friendship, meeting, relationships, cooperating. The point of our activities is to get the kids to meet, to interact.”

Dror Israel grew out of the youth movement HaNoar HaOved VeHaLomed, which means “the working and studying youth.”

That’s the movement Avigdori grew up in, participating in after-school activities akin to the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts and latching onto the movement’s labor activism. The seed was planted, and in the army, he served alongside other youth movement members, then spent 10 months doing national service as an educator.

Now he lives on a Dror Israel kibbutz in Eshbal, in Israel’s north, where he and other members pool their income and make collective decisions about how to run the community. He works in fundraising and helps facilitate Dror Israel’s relationship with the East Bay federation.

He also works on Dror Israel’s Yitzhak Rabin memorial and dialogue project, and will be a speaker and workshop leader at a Lehrhaus Judaica symposium in November marking the 20th anniversary of the former Israeli prime minister’s assassination. He was in the East Bay last year, working as a docent when the Dror Israel project “About-Face: Yitzhak Rabin, His Life and Legacy” was on display at three local synagogues and Berkeley Hillel.

Jonathan Kershenbaum
Jonathan Kershenbaum

Avigdori said Dror Israel is a way to realize the Zionist dream in the 21st century. Though earlier generations of idealistic Israelis moved to rural kibbutzes to farm the land, Avigdori said things are different nowadays.

“Growing up in the late ’90s in a suburb of Tel Aviv, it would seem unreasonable that the way to fulfill myself as an Israeli Zionist would be to move to the Negev and grow capsicum,” he said.

Instead, he said, what felt relevant was to devote his life to education. He invokes the idealism of Theodor Herzl’s Zionist vision, which he understands as “the fulfillment of the Jewish decree to do tikkun olam and to be a light among the nations.”

Teaching young people, he said, is one of the best ways to enact social change and attempt to heal the divisions in Israeli society.

“I believe education is the most radical way to change reality,” he said. “Influencing people in a dialogue, working from the grassroots up. If you’re doing actual education, you’re able to ask people questions instead of giving them answers.”

GRJ

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Here is a video about GRJ (Groups Renewing Judaism) partnership: 6 Israeli movements of young adult activist communities and their Cultural-Zionist approach which holistically integrates their community building, social justice activism and Judaism…

 

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A new kibbutz movement

An article by JAMES GRANT-ROSENHEAD, a member of Kvutsat Yovel, describing the new communities in Israel that are co-operating to create a new Kibbutz Movement. Copied from CALL No. 22.

Crises and privatisation are still ravaging the traditional kibbutzim, once heralded by Buber as 'the experiment that did not fail'. Meanwhile, new models of kibbutz are emerging, and tentatively forming a network - the Circle of Groups - between themselves. Is this the beginning of a new kibbutz movement?

One model is the 'urban kibbutz', such as Tamuz in Bet Shemesh. In their own words: "Kibbutz Tamuz is an urban kibbutz, a small Jewish community, and like the traditional kibbutz, Tamuz is a collective. Its 33 members function as a single economic unit, expressing the socialist ideals of equality and cooperation, ideas and praxis. However, unlike the traditional kibbutz, we are located in an urban environment, keeping us in tune with what is happening in society around us." (see http://www.tamuz.org.il/english/about.html)

The urban kibbutz title is also used by Migvan in Sderot (www.migvan.org.il), Bet Yisrael in Jerusalem (www.reut.org.il), and Reshit in Jerusalem. However, when considering the Circle of Groups network, this terminology is misleading, since neither the words 'urban' nor 'kibbutz' best describe many of the other groups which have been founded in recent years...